I just found this gem on Craigslist. It’s a promo poster + First Ave ticket stub signed by four members of LA Guns from back in 2001. The signatures are from Phil Lewis, Tracii Guns and two other members. The only downside is that the autograph is that it’s personalized to a fan but still, for $40 it’s a nice piece for a L.A. Guns fan.
1. L.A Guns was first formed in 1983 by Tracii Guns with Michael Jagosz, Ole Beich and Rob Gardner completing the forming line up which recorded an E.P (Extended Play) Collector’s Edition No. 1. Axel Rose first joined Guns before he fronted Rapidfire and quickly switched to materialize a union set up by Guns when he was introduced to Izzy Stradlin and Chris Weber.
2. In 1984 Hollywood Rose broke up to allow Rose a swing back to L.A Guns and the shifty ground spread to the Guns as Gardner left L.A to join the newly formed Hollywood Rose bringing about the first re-incarnation of Guns and Roses.
3. Whenever people speak about the Guns N Roses legacy, they often forget to include the unlikely merger in 1985 between two bands that took on its own life. Axel Rose from Hollywood Rose and Tracii Guns from L.A Guns met and had a brief marriage before Tracii Guns was eventually sidelined by the legendary Slash and he went back to his old mates then led by vocalist Paul Black.
4. Paul Black is credited with leading the group to their success even in his absence after he was ousted just before the band was to record an album with Polygram records, a deal that was signed thanks to Black’s songwriting and leadership alongside Guns’ nous.
5. Most people say the 1988 album was Aerosmith influenced despite it being self-titled and while that was up for debate, plenty of the songs on the album were most definitely written by Paul Black.
6. The band was further boosted by ex-W.A.S.P drummer Steve Riley and L.A Guns returned to the studio to release their more successful 1989 album Cocked and Loaded. Their iconic single “The Ballad of Jayne” pushed the album to gold allowing them a slice of the hair metal craze created by a quickly dominant Guns N’ Roses.
7. Most people speculate about the reasons that had the band laid low for years before their ill-fated album of 1995; Vicious Circle. The speculation was for naught as the band underwent several upheavals and member shifts, Polygram dropping them soon after, deeming it best to cut their losses. The ironic twist and a cruel end to their Polygram relationship truly a vicious cycle.
8. CMC International was the next deal for L.A Guns and they recorded American Hardcore which needless to say, had no impact on fans or the band. They released another E.P this time under Ralph Saenz vocals but “Wasted” as it was titled, was exactly that; wasted.
9. Saenz was quickly moved on with Jizzy Pearl coming aboard to lead Guns, Crypt, Riley and producer guitarist Gilby Clarke to the 1999 album “ Shrinking Violet”. Perris Records was the label this time and it paved the way for the band to go on tour supporting the flavor of the genre at the time, Poison.
10. Tracii Guns would go full circle in his career after he put Brides of Destruction, his new band, on hold to form Tracii Guns band with some ex members and soon it was renamed L.A Guns yet again for a swansong. This time there was no false dawn as Tracii Guns officially ended his L.A Guns association in 2012, leaving the Phil Lewis group as the only remnant of the L.A Guns in existence under the famous moniker.
11. Cash in the closet, vintage 1980s LA Guns Shirts and Guns N Roses shirts usually sell for more than $100 online, you can usually find them on BandShirtArchive.com. Next time you’re home for the holidays look though your closet, you might be sitting on a gold mine.